SSP Daily Digest: 3/30


AZ-Sen: Jeff Flake then:

That’s the difficulty of a campaign. I mean, it’s easy to just say, “Seal the border and enforce the law.” What does that really mean? What does that entail? And when you’re able to explain it, then they’re alright. And I think for those who don’t agree with my position-think that it ought to be something different-at least I think they give me a little credit for sticking with my position because I’ve always believed this is what we need and I continue to believe regardless of the political environment.

Jeff Flake now:

In the past I have supported a broad approach to immigration reform – increased border security coupled with a temporary worker program. I no longer do. I’ve been down that road, and it is a dead end. The political realities in Washington are such that a comprehensive solution is not possible, or even desirable, given the current leadership.

In other AZ news, the subscription-only Arizona Guardian says that ex-Rep. Matt Salmon may endorse Rep. Trent Franks, rather than his old buddy Flake (who succeeded him in Congress when he unsuccessfully ran for governor in 2002), something they characterize as a “snub” on their home page. Franks of course hasn’t announced a run yet, but Dave Catanese claims he’ll do so this Saturday. Just hope whoever told Dave this is more truthful than the dipshit who dissembled about Connie Mack last week. (And I still maintain that Dave had every right-if not an obligation-to burn that source.)

FL-Sen: Adam Hasner has to be feeling pretty good about himself these days. Rep. Connie Mack inartfully bowed out of the race, and Mike Haridopolos has already scored a few own-goals. So the former state House Majority Leader took to his Facebook to declare that “this election still needs a proven limited government leader, who is solid across the board on the conservative principles.” Why golly, that sounds just like Hasner, doesn’t it?

IN-Sen, IN-02: Rep. Joe Donnelly sure sounds like he’s interested in running for Senate. He told Robert Annis, a reporter for the Indianapolis Star, that he thinks his “experience is best served in the Senate.” Annis also characterized Donnelly as “leaning toward” a run. A different reporter at the same event characterized him as “leaning strongly toward” a Senate bid if the GOP makes his current district redder.

MI-Sen: PPP has the remainders from their Michigan poll last week, a kitchen sink GOP primary:

Pete Hoekstra is the clear first choice of Republicans in the state for who they’d like as their nominee to take on Debbie Stabenow next year. 38% say he’d be their pick compared to 18% for Terri Lynn Land. No one else cracks double digits, with Saul Anuzis at 5%, Justin Amash, Randy Hekman, and Tim Walberg at 4%, Chad Dewey at 3%, and Tim Leuliette with the big egg at 0%.

Speaking of The Hook, he said he’ll decide whether to challenge Stabenow in two weeks. In an amusing side note, Hoekstra admitted he got all butthurt when MI GOP chair Bobby Schostak said in a recent interview that he expects a candidate to emerge who is ” head and shoulders” above the current crop of potentials-a group which obviously includes Hoekstra. Of course, Schostak also said of this mystery candidates: “I don’t know who it is. They haven’t met with me yet, if they’re out there.” We don’t know who they are either!

NV-Sen: Rep. Dean Heller, presumably trying to scare off would-be primary opponents, raised a pretty massive $125K in a single event in Vegas on Monday night.

OH-Sen, OH-12: This is… getting strange. Top-tier Ohio Republicans have all pretty much taken a pass on challenging Sherrod Brown, or at least seem to be leaning against a run. But one guy all of a sudden put his name into the hopper: Rep. Pat Tiberi, who sits in the very swingish 12th CD. Tiberi’s spokesman made sure to remind Dave Catanese that he’s on Ways & Means, though, so that’s a pretty tasty perch to give up. Catanese also notes that state Sen. Kevin Coughlin is preparing a run.

RI-Sen: I guess rich guy Barry Hinckley is running against Sheldon Whitehouse? The founder of a software company called Bullhorn (“the global leader in On Demand, integrated front office software for the staffing and recruiting industry”), Hinckley is apparently trying to burnish his Republican credentials by holding some fundraisers at California yacht clubs. (Not joking about that.)


LA-Gov: 2010 Lt. Gov. nominee Caroline Fayard is starting to sound very much like a gubernatorial candidate… that is, if you can hear her over her foot-stuffed-in-mouth. She didn’t do much to help her cause by declaring at a recent even that she “hates Republicans” because they are “cruel” and “eat their young.” (Uh, I talk a lot of shit about the GOP, but what does “eat their young” even mean?) Fayard later tried to wiggle her way out of this by claiming “I’m against the president, but I don’t need to see his birth certificate.” So she’s managed to kill her crossover vote and her support among African Americans in one fell swoop. Well, uh, she sure is getting some free media out of this. (Hat tip: Daily Kingfish)


CT-05: I guess I thought that former state Rep. Elizabeth Esty (D) had already announced she was running for Chris Murphy’s seat, but apparently she’s only just formed an exploratory committee.

MN-06: It’s not particularly meaningful, since the funds can be transferred to another federal account, but Michele Bachmann did just file to run for re-election yesterday.

NY-25, VA-02: Dan Maffei apparently says he’ll decide on a rematch “in the next two months,” while Glenn Nye (I’d forgotten he was still considering) will wait until “sometime in the summer.” (That’s how The Hill phrased it in both cases.)

RI-01: With the city of Providence’s finances imploding, freshman Rep. David Cicilline is taking a beating over his stewardship of the city he used to be mayor of. Among other things, a new Brown University poll finds him with a statewide approval rating of just 17-49. Could Cicilline be vulnerable in the general election? I doubt it, but he could underperform annoyingly and require help that could best be expended elsewhere, like a Paul Kanjorski. I think he might be more at risk in a primary.

Other Races:

Wisconsin Recall: In just the last two months, the Wisconsin Democratic Party reports raising $1.4 million-or, a quarter million more than it did in all of 2010. In other news, a coordinator of the petition drive against Randy Hopper seems to have gone off-message with his intimation that volunteers would have “closer to 30,000 than 15,000” signatures by Tuesday (a month before the deadline). 15,269 sigs are needed for the recall to happen, but a spokesperson for the Democratic Party told the Journal Sentinel that these figures (such as they are) “are not accurate” and wouldn’t say more. Quite understandably, t’s pretty much been the policy of the party not to talk about where things stand.

Wisconsin Sup. Ct.: JoAnne Kloppenburg is out with TV and radio ads that tout her independence.


WATN?: Artur Davis, douchebag from beyond the grave. This is actually the same link as the NY-25/VA-02 item above; Davis did an event with Maffei and Nye at which he said that President Obama would bear the brunt of the blame for any government shutdown. Davis’s claim: “I think that voters always focus on the executive as the responsible officer.” That’s why Bill Clinton lost so badly in 1996, right?

In other WATN? news, I’m guessing that ex-Rep. Bart Gordon (D) is probably ruling out a run for the seat he voluntarily gave up last year (TN-06), or a Senate bid – he just took a job at the law firm of K&L Gates. (The “Gates” is Bill Gates, Sr., the Microsoft founder’s dad, who is now retired.)

Redistricting Roundup:

Indiana: Have an idea for an Indiana state Senate map? Sen. Tim Lane (D) wants to hear from you! (Seriously!) Contact information is at the link.

Louisiana: Even though he had said he’d stay out of it, Gov. Bobby Jindal’s been weighing in on the redistricting process-and Dems, as you might guess, aren’t happy about it. Click through the article to learn more about the exact nature of the dispute. Ultimately, though, it sounds as though Jindal will get his way, which more or less preserves the status quo.

Funnymanders: What happens when a very careful redistricting job blows up in your face because the state Senate Majority Leader’s son being groomed for the new seat tells the media he can’t even remember being arrested for getting into a dispute over chicken fingers at Applebee’s? Well, I’m calling that a funnymander. Nathan Gonzales has the details on that story, and a few other anecdotes as well, about redistricting gone awry.

Dark Money: On the darker side of redistricting is all the unregulated cash flooding into various coffers, which Politico takes a look at. A big reason is an FEC decision last year which allowed members of Congress to raise unlimited soft money for redistricting groups, and both Dems and Republicans are, of course, going at it full bore.

101 thoughts on “SSP Daily Digest: 3/30”

  1. is probably not in as bad shape as the poll suggests, since it’s one of those polls that includes “fair” as an option, which for some reason is automatically grouped in with “poor” as negative, while I would argue it’s pretty much the same as saying “no opinion”.

  2. Ann Kirkpatrick, who lost to Paul Gosar in AZ-01, has announced she wants her old seat back. I’m not sure what to think of this. Someone here said she folded like a cheap suit when she was challenged, but she didn’t lose that badly despite the wave.

    Now, I wonder how newly-elected Rep. Sean Duffy will be helped in his re-election (there, now it’s related :]) if he continues to whine about difficult his life is with a salary of only $174,000. Sure, he went without a paycheck while he campaigned, but his wife didn’t. According to Open Secrets, his wife brings in at least $50,000 a year. But maybe, just maybe, he did struggle than I realize. Well, how he’s making well above the median salary nationwide. And even if he as a point that benefits in Wisconsin are much better than those in Washington, perhaps the answer is to…improve the benefits in Washington, not reduce those for public employees in Washington.

    Read the comments from the Journal Sentinel Online. Most of them rake him over the coals. If I were a Democratic campaign operative, I’d be making this into an ad for 2012 after reading those.

  3. Patrick Tiberi is going to run for Senate, thus vacating a Columbus-area seat and prompting the Ohio Republicans to do the smart and sensible thing and create a central Columbus democratic vote sink, now that they don’t have to sacrifice one of their own to do it, thus rendering my beautiful redistricting map posted two days ago officially wrong and into the dustbin of history.



    Roy Moore, the “Ten Commandments Judge,” is going to pursue the Republican presidential nomination. Apparently, the news broke last week. It’s a measure of how far Moore has fallen since days as a controversial national figure that people (i.e., me) are only hearing about this now.

    (me too)

    the 64-year-old judge is preparing to launch a presidential exploratory committee and enter the Iowa fray, according to multiple Iowa GOP officials.

  5. link

    A tea party group published what they called the “most constitutional” redistricting plan for NJ’s 40 legislative districts. It’s compact, but too loose with population equality. Surprisingly it has some gifts to the Democrats, like 18 which is a Democratic district in Somerset County, and 19 which puts Republican-leaning Old Bridge in a very Democratic district.


    Both Obama and the Republican garner 79% of the party vote, with Indies going 32-28 for the GOP-er. He’s at 42/48 approval and has a 41/50 re-elect. Looks to me like Quinnipiac’s perhaps using a GOP-friendly model (like a 35-35-30 split, where it should be more like 40-32-28 D-R-I).

  7. last night,I went to a talk with stu rothenburg and asked him if he thought any states might overreach in their redistricting efforts and create dummymanders (although i didn’t use that word).  

    He said he didn’t think many states would dummymander themselves, but that he didn’t think they’d gain from redistricting either.  basically he figured they’re going to try to solidify their gains from 2010 to maintain the house majority.

    He also said that the reports shouldn’t be trying to handicap the house now, before the new maps are finished, unless they have a good idea of what the new maps will be.  

  8. But I keep noting it: Matt Salmon retired in 2000, keeping a pledge he made in 1994 to only serve 3 terms. Jeff Flake succeeded him then. He did not retire in 2002 to run for that years gubernatorial election.  

  9. A special election was held for the remainder of Lt. Gov. Robert Duffy’s term. Here are the results; no Republican ran, but the Democratic nominee faced a strong challenge from a candidate on the Working Families/Independence lines:

    Tom Richards (D) – 12,270

    Bill Johnson (WF/IP) – 10,448

    Alex White (G) – 2,182

    A little research reveals that Johnson served three terms as mayor (as a Democrat) prior to Duffy. Richards was the CEO of a local utility, then became an attorney for the city.

  10. Marketing Resource Group, an in-state R pollster with a long and strong track record, polled Rick Snyder’s favorables/job approval and found him still above water, albeit barely:

    42/38 job approvals, personal favorability even a bit above that. Sample is much more plausible (both in partisan affiliation and demographic makeup) than PPP’s, and squares much better with what I’ve seen in reality here. Some people are upset about the budget and the EFM bill (mainly the latter), but Snyder is by no means in Granholm territory yet. People are generally still willing to give him the benefit of the doubt.

  11. Here’s a good article from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel about how downticket races will affect the election on Tuesday. Basically both Milwaukee and Dane (home of Madison) Counties will have special elections for County Execs next week,  and they’re expected to bring turnout up:

    Anecdotally, there are rumors in Madison that the city clerk is calling in lots of city employees to help at the polls with the spring election, because they’re expecting November level turnout. If that’s true, Prosser’s finished.

  12. The new version basically makes Ohio an at work state and prohibits payroll deductions for union pac dues, which is different than total payroll deduction, but still bad.

    So, instead of listening to people and weakening the bill, they made it worse, upping the ante for citizen repeal.

    Kasich is expected to sign the bill by Friday.  It won’t go into effect until the referendum is settled (they only need 1,000 signatures to block it, which is probably already done), so at least we have that going for us.

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